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Wanted: Chairs From Local Landmarks
Tush-testing salvaged seats from three historic buildings.
Clowes Memorial Hall
The Chairs: Cushy upholstered perches in use since Clowes opened in 1963. Backstory: The original 1,888 seats were removed in the recent renovation, and those not done in by decades of wear were set aside for potential resale later. Availability: Around 200 seats. Tush Test: Though the chairs are slightly wider than most theater seats, staffers think approximately 9 million people have sat in the theater. Imagine what 9 million butts would do to your couch. Try Before You Buy: There’s no way yet, but stay tuned and check cloweshall.org for updates.
The Chairs: Wood-slat seats dating back to the Coliseum’s 1939 opening. Backstory: During the ongoing renovation, a handful of the roughly 8,000 seats were refurbished, mounted on bases, and offered for sale. Price: $1,000 per pair. Availability: 100 sets. But they’re going fast, so check eBay for resales. Tush Test: Not very comfortable, in case your memory of that Beatles concert/ABA Pacers game/JFK campaign speech is hazy. Try Before You Buy: Wait for the arena to reopen next August. Some chairs will be reinstalled, for patrons whose backsides pine for that old-school feel.
The Chairs: Hard plastic circa-1970s fold-ups. Backstory: Bush Stadium met the wrecking ball in 2012, and the local nonprofit People for Urban Progress salvaged 9,000 seats. Price: $360 for a refurbished single, $675 for a double. Availability: Plenty—check peopleup.org. Tush Test: Anyone who ever squirmed through an Indians doubleheader can tell you they don’t offer much padding. Try Before You Buy: Visit a “PUPstop”—an IndyGo bus stop outfitted with these orange treasures.
Photos by Tony Valainis
This article appeared in the September 2013 issue.